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Methyl isobutyl ketone.

Post questions and info about combustion (flammable vapor) powered cannons here. This includes discussion about fuels, ratios, ignition systems, safety, and anything else relevant.
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Methyl isobutyl ketone.

Unread postAuthor: Bias_P11 » Thu Aug 25, 2011 10:09 pm

So i bought some denatured alcohol. It has 1-4% methyl isobutyl ketone. Would it damage pvc or pvc cement?
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Unread postAuthor: Mr.Tallahassee » Thu Aug 25, 2011 10:14 pm

I don't think it is a good idea to use it. I found a pdf on PVC that said something about using MIBK as a solvent.
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Unread postAuthor: jrrdw » Thu Aug 25, 2011 10:14 pm

I'm no chemist so I have to ask, what are you doing with this?
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Unread postAuthor: jsefcik » Thu Aug 25, 2011 10:45 pm

Its what nail polish remover is pretty much made off, i have used it to clean pvc pipe when i ran out of primer!!!!!!!!!
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Unread postAuthor: Mr.Tallahassee » Thu Aug 25, 2011 11:02 pm

jsefcik wrote:Its what nail polish remover is pretty much made off, i have used it to clean pvc pipe when i ran out of primer!!!!!!!!!
Actually, it IS one of the ingredients but the real solvent is the acetone in Nail Polish Remover. The alcohol is just a quick evaporating base for the rest of the chemicals.
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Unread postAuthor: jsefcik » Thu Aug 25, 2011 11:06 pm

so its not going to hurt pvc pipe then
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Unread postAuthor: Mr.Tallahassee » Thu Aug 25, 2011 11:17 pm

No, denatured alcohol won't but the Methyl Isobutyl Ketone will. There is a solvent in that denatured alcohol that will affect PVC. How much it will affect it, I don't know.
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Fri Aug 26, 2011 12:08 am

It's a fairly low concentration, but still, better to find some denatured with denatonium benzoate (bitrex).
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Unread postAuthor: Bias_P11 » Fri Aug 26, 2011 8:43 pm

Alrighty so I've shot quite a few loads out of it. Its a very good fuel, and at this concentration, it doesn't seem like any damage. My gun is made almost completely out of fittings rather than pipe, and the fittings are still clean and perfect while the pipe looks a bit irregular inside. This leads me to think that pvc cement is actually worse for your gun than this (Lawl).
It is amazing as fuel since its difficult to put too much, short of flooding the chamber (If you put too much, there will be a cobalt colored muzzle flash). The chamber cools itself down and actually fires better when warm. It also smells like barbecue wood smoke after shooting, and effectively removes the smell of deodorant fuels. Love this 48%ethanol, 48%methanol 1-4% MIBK fuel.
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Unread postAuthor: saefroch » Sat Aug 27, 2011 10:47 am

You're using it as fuel? Gases tend not to dissolve solids :P

We all highly suggest a meter, but this fuel probably isn't compatible with most metering systems because of its low vapor pressure.
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Unread postAuthor: Mr.Tallahassee » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:15 am

It starts as a liquid so yes, it can dissolve solids. The fact that it starts as a liquid ay be why it works so well as a fuel.
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Unread postAuthor: saefroch » Sat Aug 27, 2011 3:29 pm

Mr.Tallahassee wrote:It starts as a liquid so yes, it can dissolve solids. The fact that it starts as a liquid ay be why it works so well as a fuel.
It probably works well as a fuel because there is already oxygen in the structure, so the ignitable range of the mix is larger.

Is it being placed in the chamber as a liquid or gas?
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Unread postAuthor: jimmy101 » Sun Aug 28, 2011 10:17 am

1-4% methyl isobutyl ketone

It has zero effect on the plastic or the combustion characteristics.
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Unread postAuthor: JABN » Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:10 pm

It better and cheaper to use fuel that is already in gas, like propane or butane. Denatured alcohol has many additives that vary depending on the brand, so its inconsistent and if you used pure methanol or pure ethanol it would be too expensive.
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Unread postAuthor: SpudBlaster15 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:29 am

JABN wrote:if you used pure methanol or pure ethanol it would be too expensive.


How exactly is methanol expensive? I can get 3.78L containers of it from nearly any hardware store for ~$10, which on a per mass basis is far cheaper than most aerosols and even 1lb propane cylinders. You will however require a little less than 3X more methanol than propane to achieve a stoichiometric mixture, which means the cost will probably be fairly similar.

I do agree that lower boiling compounds tend to make better fuels though. Propane is superior to methanol simply because it's a gas at all conditions near STP. The actual energy output per mole of oxidizer and peak combustion pressures are very similar.
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